It is one of the core principles behind running a trucking operation, simple enough to say and not so easy to do well, and that is ensuring the freight is getting to the right place at the right time. Tim Giles meets an operator who has grown his business by following this rule to the letter.
Operating out of a small depot in the southern Brisbane suburb of Meadowbrook and covering a freight route stretching from SE Queensland all the away West to Charleville, and beyond, Maney Transport has carved out a niche by providing a reliable freight service out to a string of towns along the route.
Tony Maney started out as an owner/driver working from his home in Meadowbrook back in 1975. He began as a sub-contractor for Mayne Nickless, as many other trucking businesses did at that time. He would also source work from other transport companies and developed a newspaper run out into the Darling Downs.
As his business matured Tony began working for the McPhees operation, which is where he learnt a lot of the principles he lives by today in his business, of doing the job right, being well organised and emphasising customer service. From an owner driver he grew to need premises in Bethania before starting at this current site six years ago after outgrowing that facility.
It was only about ten years ago that Tony started to concentrate on overnight freight out of Brisbane along the ‘Western Corridor’ through Toowoomba, Dalby, Chinchilla, Roma and Charleville. He was already very familiar with the area, as this was the route his paper trucks were servicing at the time. Tony saw the newspaper delivery business starting to wane along the route, but could see the rising demand for overnight freight delivery.
One of their customers was looking for a regular overnight service into the region, so Tony took the opportunity to make the operation swing over from the declining newspaper work into developing the local delivery side of the business. The task was servicing the corridor either side of the Warrego Highway heading West across Queensland. In the beginning five trucks were enough to carry the freight and cover all of the different drop off points.
“It was bare bones at the start,” says Tony. “But we had other work to keep us going for the first 18 months. We were running six nights a week.”
The regular run to Roma/grew organically over time, to be followed by another out to Goondiwindi, for the same original customer. Further drops were added in as the operation grew and now a full trailer will run regularly out to Charleville. The number of towns with a guaranteed overnight service grew and the smaller settlements in between and beyond were serviced regularly.